Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board


About the Board

Background Information

The Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board was established in 1953 to assist Government in the development of policy under the provisions of the Apprenticeship Act “whereby a supply of trained personnel would be always available to industry and that by an organized programme of training our people would become responsible educated members of society.”1

Newfoundlanders and Labradorians have always been famous for their ability to work with their hands. At the first meeting of the Board in July 1953, the Chair – Dr. G. A. Frecker, a distinguished educator and engineer – stated that historically, a lack of formal training for specific occupations resulted in the majority of our Province’s population becoming “ordinary hewers of wood and drawers of water” when going abroad to seek work. To cure this deficiency, the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador had, by 1953, established the Vocational Training Institute, enacted the Vocational Education Act and enacted the Apprenticeship Act.

Dr. Frecker noted that through these initiatives, Government had “laid a basis for sound progress” and that by “the co-ordination of all parties concerned with the administration of these Government policies, the time should not be too far distant when beneficial results should most certainly begin to appear”.2

Mr. G. T. Dwyer, Deputy Minister of Labour in 1953, also commented that the members of the new Apprenticeship Board “have been given and have accepted a great responsibility as well as a wonderful opportunity to perform a public service which is bound to make itself felt in the years to come”.3

The statements of Dr, Frecker and Mr. Dwyer could not have been more true. Since 1953, the Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board, working closely with industry, training institutions and Government, has done much to develop and promote the apprenticeship system in Newfoundland and Labrador. Among their key accomplishments since 1953:

  • Designation of 54 trades for both training (38) and certification (16), including 42 Interprovincial, or Red Seal, trades;
  • Establishment of Trade Advisory Committees for designated occupations;
  • Development and Approval of 37 Plans of Apprenticeship Training for the designated trades;
  • Development of Records of Progress, or logbooks, for each Plan of Training;
  • Certification of approximately 24,000 journey persons;
  • Accreditation of 63 apprenticeship training programs in private and public post-secondary training institutions;
  • Review of the Accreditation Act and recommendation of legislative revisions;
  • Promotion of Apprenticeship Training throughout Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Development of the Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board Policy Manual

1 Minutes, First Meeting of the Apprenticeship Board, July 1953

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The mandate of the Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board (PACB) is very broad and one which covers a number of apprenticeship training issues. The Board:

  • sets policies to ensure that the Apprenticeship and Certification Training Act is implemented;
  • accredits institutions to deliver apprenticeship programs;
  • designates occupations for apprenticeship training and/or certification;
  • establishes Provincial Advisory Committees for each designated occupation;
  • establishes examination committees to conduct practical examinations for apprentices and trade qualifiers;
  • approves Plans of Training; and
  • provides advice to government on labour market matters related to training and certification.

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Specific Duties of the Board

The Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board:

  • determines whether an occupation is appropriate for certification and designates occupations;
  • develops the form and contents of plans of training and determines and approves the objectives of every course of instruction included in plans of training;
  • develops a memorandum of understanding for apprenticeship for designated occupations;
  • registers all apprentices and trade qualifiers and monitors their progress leading to journey person certification;
  • accredits institutions for the purpose of delivering training in a designated occupation;
  • provides for periodic and final examinations of apprentices and trade qualifiers and appoints examining committees to conduct practical examinations;
  • revokes journey person certification in the cases of fraudulent application; and
  • determines all disputes arising out of a memorandum of understanding for apprenticeship or a plan of apprenticeship training.

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Board Members

The following represents the current membership of the Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board:

  • Chair
    • David Harris
  • Departmental Representative
    • Sandra Bishop, Director of Apprenticeship and Trades Certification Division, AES
  • Employer Representatives
    • Joann Greeley
    • Craig Randell
  • Employee Representatives
    • Vacant
    • Vacant
  • At-Large Representatives
    • Karen Rowe
    • Karen Walsh
  • Alternates
    • Mona Morrow (At-Large Representative)
    • Jennifer Hillier (Employer Representative)
    • Tyson Stanley Hedge (Employee Representative)

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Board Minutes

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Board Initiatives and Activities

The Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board holds meetings four times per year.

Some of the more recent initiatives of the Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board include:

Shaping the Provincial Apprenticeship System – A Strategic Approach

Funded under the Labor Market Development Agreement (LMDA), the Board is involved in a new Departmental initiative that will see: increased promotion of apprenticeship and an employer strategy to create more job opportunities for apprentices to gain work experience; a focus on increasing completion rate of apprentices to meet current and future skills shortages; the enhancement of the current Apprenticeship Information Management System; and discussions with other provinces to improve the transferability of apprenticeship training programs and mobility of apprentices.

Apprenticeship Program Accreditation Project

The Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board is responsible for the accreditation of all provincial apprenticeship training programs offered by private and public educational agencies. The purpose of accreditation is to provide an auditing mechanism to ensure that all apprenticeship programs are meeting the accreditation requirements as set by the Board. The Board initiated the Apprenticeship Program Accreditation Project in 1998 and to date, 67 programs have been accredited.

Atlantic Common Core Curriculum Standards

The Board is involved in an Atlantic Canada “Common Core Curriculum Standards” initiative between the four Atlantic Provinces, which will see the development of a core curriculum for a number of apprenticeship occupations.

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Contact Information

For further information about the Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board, please contact:

Provincial Apprenticeship and Certification Board

Department of Advanced Education, Skills and Labour
P.O. Box 8700
Confederation Building
St. John’s, NL A1B 4J6
Telephone: 1-709-729-2350
Fax: 1-709-729-5878
or contact the nearest Industrial Training office.

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